I like that idea. What I do is have them summarize each section of my syllabus (I have it divided into a variety of sections) in 10 words or less, but I don't do it without verbally highlighting several key areas.
My first day agenda has them:
* write who they are in a sort of quick write that they immediately post up so that they can claim space in the room
* take an informal survey on an information sheet so I can get a feel for who I'm dealing with
* go over the key points of the syllabus
The 50 or so minutes go by quickly and very quietly on their part. I've been told I look somewhat intimidating when I make it clear to them that the class demands a degree of diligence they may be unaccustomed to. As long as they know I want their best to emerge, I am satisfied.